E-Bundling Guidance for Remote Hearings – Falcon Chambers

Posted May 21st, 2020 in coronavirus, electronic filing, news, remote hearings by sally

‘As a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, on 19 March 2020, the Lord Chief Justice delivered a message in respect of the Civil & Family Courts in which he said: “The default position now in all jurisdictions must be that hearings should be conducted with one, more than one, or all participants attending remotely.” Legal professionals are naturally anxious to know what may be expected of them in practically in preparation for such hearings.’

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Falcon Chambers, May 2020

Source: www.falcon-chambers.com

New Guidance for Coroners on COVID-19 Deaths and Workplace Exposure – Henderson Chambers

Posted May 21st, 2020 in coronavirus, coroners, health & safety, news by sally

‘Concerns have been raised, not least by the bereaved families of key-workers in the frontline, about the possible link between workplace exposure to coronavirus and COVID-19 deaths. The Chief Coroner has now published his Guidance Note No 37 on whether, and how, coronial investigations into such deaths should be opened. This development highlights the likelihood that Coroners’ Courts will be the first fora in which issues over the adequacy and quality of the protection available to workers (whether by PPE or workplace procedures) will be investigated publicly. Given the significance of such issues, it is essential that organisations are prepared for such investigations and inquests.’

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Henderson Chambers, 10th May 2020

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Transparency and risk assessments : A Covid-Catch 22 – Transparency Project

Posted May 21st, 2020 in coronavirus, courts, health & safety, HM Courts Service, news by sally

‘It is encouraging that HMCTS (Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service has published their organisational risk assessment, dealing with the broad approach to the assessment of risk around the attendance of public and professionals at court hearings during the Covid-19 outbreak. It is for others to comment on whether the apparent assumption that adherence to a two metre social distancing rule within court buildings will in fact be safe, though we note that some materials suggest that spending long periods of time in a confined room, especially an air conditioned one, is unlikely to be risk free. People can however, make up their own minds about that assessment and whether or not it is wise for them to attend court if not essential.’

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Transparency Project, 20th May 2020

Source: www.transparencyproject.org.uk

Remote hearings in civil cases cannot just become ‘new normal’ – Litigation Futures

Posted May 21st, 2020 in civil justice, coronavirus, Law Society, news, remote hearings by sally

‘It is “vitally important” that remote hearings are not accepted as the “new normal” in the civil courts after the coronavirus pandemic passes without substantial work on the quality of justice delivered, the Law Society has warned.’

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Litigation Futures, 21st May 2020

Source: www.litigationfutures.com

Volume of work in Magistrates’ Courts needs to be increased, says Lord Chief Justice – Local Government Lawyer

Posted May 21st, 2020 in coronavirus, delay, magistrates, news by sally

‘The Lord Chief Justice has sent a message to magistrates saying the volume of work in the Magistrates’ Courts needs to be increased.’

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Local Government Lawyer, 20th May 2020

Source: www.localgovernmentlawyer.co.uk

MPs and peers call for legal requirement to delete UK contact-tracing data – The Guardian

Posted May 21st, 2020 in bills, coronavirus, data protection, internet, news, select committees by sally

‘The government must legally swear to delete all the data it captures using the NHS Covid-19 contact-tracing app, a committee of MPs and peers has urged.’

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The Guardian, 15th May 2020

Source: www.theguardian.com

Planning and Re-starting the Housing Market – 4-5 Gray’s Inn Square

Posted May 21st, 2020 in construction industry, coronavirus, housing, news, planning by sally

‘Late on 12 May 2020, the Housing Secretary published a plan to re-start the housing market: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/housing-secretary-sets-out-plan-to-restart-housing-market. The measures are intended to support the economy and make progress in an industry where much been paused during the lockdown.’

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4-5 Gray's Inn Square, 13th May 2020

Source: www.4-5.co.uk

Freedom of contract: Does it still exist? – Littleton Chambers

Posted May 21st, 2020 in chambers articles, contracts, coronavirus, enforcement, news by sally

‘A provocative title, to be sure.

But on 7 May 2020, HM Government published through the Cabinet Office a document entitled “Guidance on responsible contractual behaviour in the performance and enforcement of contracts impacted by the Covid-19 emergency” (the “Note”).’

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Littleton Chambers, 11th May 2020

Source: littletonchambers.com

Civil Justice Council Rapid Consultation: The impact of COVID-19 measures on the civil justice system – Transparency Project

Posted May 20th, 2020 in civil justice, consultations, coronavirus, courts, news, remote hearings by sally

‘Following the rapid consultation on the use of remote hearings in the family justice system, undertaken by the Nuffield Family Justice Observatory at the request of the President of the Family Division, the Civil Justice Council have now embarked on a similar consultation in relation to the civil courts.’

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Transparency Project, 19th May 2020

Source: www.transparencyproject.org.uk

“Project Restart” or a false start: can professional sports clubs compel their players to return to the pitch and waive health and safety liability? – Littleton Chambers

Posted May 20th, 2020 in chambers articles, coronavirus, employment, health, health & safety, news, sport by sally

‘As elite-level leagues, sporting associations and other stakeholders debate whether competitions can be restarted in an era of physical distancing, it has been reported that some professional football and rugby clubs are proposing to require players to sign disclaimers in relation to the health risks posed by Covid-19 before they resume training.’

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Littleton Chambers, 14th May 2020

Source: littletonchambers.com

Anxiety among aspiring solicitors has “skyrocketed” – Legal Futures

Posted May 20th, 2020 in charities, coronavirus, mental health, news, paralegals, solicitors, statistics by sally

‘Anxiety among aspiring solicitors has “skyrocketed” as a result of the Covid-19 crisis, a survey has found, with 75% of trainees and paralegals expecting it to lead to “significant job losses at my level of seniority”.’

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Legal Futures, 20th May 2020

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Female barristers warn of “disproportionate attrition” during Covid-19 – Legal Futures

‘Female barristers have urged the courts and chambers to take action to avoid the coronavirus crisis leading to “further and disproportionate attrition of women from the Bar”.’

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Legal Futures, 20th May 2020

Source: www.legalfutures.co.uk

Ayshea Megyery summarises recent cases and research in respect of the impact of COVID-19 in the family courts – Park Square Barristers

‘Whether a case proceeds by remote hearing must be decided on the sometimes competing factors of the individual case. However, pushing forward to achieve remote hearings must not be at the expense of a fair and just process. The decision of the President distils a number of key principles to be borne in mind. Just because a matter can be heard remotely does not mean it must be. In this case the delay in proceedings was outweighed by the fact that the hearing could not be properly or fairly conducted without the physical presence of the mother before the judge in the courtroom. As a result of that decision, the President re-listed the matter until such time that the restrictions relating to Covid-19 are lifted.’

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Park Square Barristers, 14th May 2020

Source: www.parksquarebarristers.co.uk

Grenfell Tower Inquiry on hold until July at earliest amid coronavirus pandemic – BBC News

Posted May 20th, 2020 in accidents, coronavirus, delay, fire, housing, inquiries, news by sally

‘The Grenfell Tower Inquiry will not resume until July at the earliest, organisers have said.’

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BBC News, 19th May 2020

Source: www.bbc.co.uk

Up to 1,500 English primary schools to defy 1 June reopening plan – The Guardian

‘Up to 1,500 primary schools in England are expected to remain closed on 1 June after a rebellion by at least 18 councils forced the government to say it had no plans to sanction them.’

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The Guardian, 19th May 2020

Source: www.theguardian.com

FCA instructs City giant to run BI insurance test cases – Litigation Futures

Posted May 20th, 2020 in coronavirus, financial services ombudsman, insurance, news by sally

‘The Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has instructed City giant Herbert Smith Freehills for the test cases it intends to run on whether business interruption (BI) insurance covers the coronavirus pandemic.’

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Litigation Futures, 18th May 2020

Source: www.litigationfutures.com

Getting the Court to Hear Your Case During the Pandemic – 3PB

Posted May 19th, 2020 in adjournment, coronavirus, county courts, lists, news, remote hearings by sally

‘The county court has responded rapidly to the sudden and unprecedented change to its working practices. However, the move to remote hearings has brought a marked decline in the retention of existing listings. Many litigants have found their hearings adjourned by the court even when those hearings were, on the face of it, suitable for hearing remotely.’

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3PB, 12th May 2020

Source: www.3pb.co.uk

COVID-19 : a murderous virus? – Church Court Chambers

Posted May 19th, 2020 in causation, coronavirus, murder, news, prosecutions, unlawful killing by sally

‘Notwithstanding the seriousness of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and a global effort to fight the same, some individuals have taken it upon themselves to exacerbate the horror of the virus by spitting at others, purporting to have coronavirus. The Criminal Justice System is sadly accustomed to dealing with offences that involve threats to spread disease via bodily fluids; these offenders are often seeking to cause psychological terror and harm, rather than physical harm. However in circumstances such as this, the immediate psychological fear caused by the concern that the victim may have contracted the virus, may then be sadly outweighed by the pain and suffering of contracting the virus and subsequent death.’

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Church Court Chambers, May 2020

Source: churchcourtchambers.co.uk

Planning for the Future – 39 Essex Chambers

Posted May 19th, 2020 in chambers articles, coronavirus, news, planning by sally

‘There has been a determined effort by Ministers and much of government to keep the planning system going during the coronavirus crisis. The ability to carry out development is one of the means of maintaining jobs and restoring the economy as the country comes out of lockdown.’

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39 Essex Chambers, 14th May 2020

Source: www.39essex.com

Who gets the ventilator? Important legal rights in a pandemic – Blackstone Chambers

Posted May 19th, 2020 in chambers articles, coronavirus, hospitals, medical treatment, news by sally

‘COVID-19 is a highly contagious infection with no proven treatment. Approximately 2.5% of patients need mechanical ventilation while their body fights the infection.1 Once COVID-19 patients reach the point of critical illness where ventilation is necessary, they tend to deteriorate quickly. During the pandemic, patients with other conditions may also present at the hospital needing emergency ventilation. But ventilation of a COVID-19 patient can last for 2–3 weeks. Accordingly, if all ventilators are in use, there will not be time for patients to ‘queue up’ to wait for those who arrived earlier to recover. Those who need a ventilator will die if they do not receive access to one quickly.’

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Blackstone Chambers, 14th May 2020

Source: coronavirus.blackstonechambers.com